What a fabulous, indulgent and memorable weekend! It was such a treat to travel to Park City, stay at a beautiful resort and meet other health and fitness bloggers who wanted to workout, eat great food,explore and take a million pictures, just like me!
(Thanks to Travis and Lindsay for the group pic!)
I was literally the second person to arrive since I woke up so early to workout at Salt Lake City CrossFit, then wrote a post and had time to spare before heading over to Park City (about 20 mins from where I was staying in Salt Lake). I had a huge brunch at The Blue Plate Diner, and then made my way to the Hyatt Escala Lodge.
I checked in and got all my swag, which I had to dig through right away!
I was sharing a small room with three other bloggers who I didn’t know. That could be a dicey situation, but after having a great bloggie-roommate experience at Fitbloggin with Sana, Ericka and Gabby (who I love keeping in touch with!) I was way less nervous about meeting and getting to know my newest roommates. I thought about heading out of the hotel and exploring Park City while I had some time to burn, but after charging my phone I decided to head downstairs and see if I could find anyone I “internet know” (ie I follow their blog and comment but may not know very well in real life). I headed over to the expo room and finally bumped into Lindsay who I hadn’t seen yet. Big hugs were given, I missed seeing this lady in real life!
I helped set up the snack time (sponsored by Attune Foods and Justin’s nut butter) with Katie and soon enough ladies were pouring in to grab some nut butter and graham crackers.
After meeting Lisa, chatting with Laura, and a whole bunch of other very friendly bloggers, I met my roommates and we headed upstairs to change for the cocktail party. I had packed light and wasn’t thrilled with the dress I had packed. It’s weird trying to decide what to wear for these things. Now that I work from home and coach, I basically live in workout gear, so getting dressed up has become more foreign to me (literally last time I packed a bunch of dresses while traveling, I was in Paris, not Park City!). Also, I have a problem caring all that much, until the last minute when I’m like, “shit, everyone is going to look way cuter than me, I should have brought a better dress!” I still can’t care all that much, especially because no one else really does.
The cocktail hour was fun, I got to know my roommate Stephanie, we mingled around and also took a photobooth pic together!
Super fun idea Blend ladies!
After cocktails we headed over to dinner which was delicious, and where I met Amy, Vanessa and got to chat with Laura who I met briefly at the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco last year. It was nice to share dinner with such a fun and interesting group of women. The highlight on the food side of things was of course the dessert.
Chobani Panna Cotta
I was pretty beat after dinner and my roommates and I headed up to bed and lights were out around 10 or 10:30. None of us slept particularly well, the room was super hot, but we managed to drag our butts out of bed to make it to the GPP Fitness class.
I worked out next to Lindsay, which was motivating! I found myself needing to scale on the burpees though! I feel like I’m a record holder for slowest burpees ever, Linds kicked some serious butt and got every rep. The warm-up was super fun, we did these 50m sprints to dead stops that definitely made me sore the next day.
(All GPP pic’s are Lindsay’s)
After the workout we had a breakfast that was provided by Laughing Cow and Muesli Fusion another great menu with delicious food. (You guys know me, I’m not big on taking pictures of food, it normally doesn’t last long enough for me to remember to snap a picture!).
From breakfast we had a decision to go for the ProBar Sponsored hike or stay in for zumba, I bundled up, deciding to brave the rain and go for the hike. It actually didn’t rain much during the hike and while SUPER muddy (I really should have taken a picture of my shoes afterwards!) it was great. I love hiking. After we hit about 2 miles we then took pictures:
(pic from fitcupcaker)
And I decided to run down the hill. I’m figured it’s good practice because I have the running portion of Ski to Sea this weekend and the elevation drop of 2,200ft over 8 miles is going to require some strong downhill skills. I’ll actually probably grab my ProBar Bolts, they taste better than Sharkies with and they’re bigger like the Shot Bloks.
I had the short rib sliders, which were decadent. After filling our bellies we were ready to relax at the spa. Our appointments were at 4:30 so we had a lot of time to spare, we took advantage of the steam rooms, the hot stone chairs and the lounge area.
After 80 minutes of a deep tissue massage, which was incredible, Christine and I headed back to the hotel. I was getting really hungry so luckily I ran into my roomie Paula and tagged along with her and some other ladies to get Sushi on Main Street.
I definitely felt like I met a lot more people during this blog “conference” than fitbloggin. Maybe because I was more willing to join along on things and not afraid to introduce myself that this experience was different. We also had so much more time to actually hang out, which was really nice and obviously makes it more of a retreat.
After a bit of shopping with Paula, we headed back to the room where I realized I wanted to crawl into bed, but I headed up to the scone party just to say a quick hello. It looked like a lot of fun, but I was ready to snooze.
The next morning I wasn’t feeling awesome so I decided to skip the morning GPP workout. I almost sort of wish I hadn’t because it looked like another good one, but I knew that I’d be going to Park City CrossFit on Monday and I wanted to be rested for that WOD. Instead I slept in a bit and then started packing. I couldn’t believe the weekend was over so soon!
During the Chobani breakfast (which was another really great meal, seriously, the food over the weekend was delicious, not what I expected at all!) I started to ask around about plans in the afternoon. It turned out the Taylor and Meighan were staying in Salt Lake that night. I was determined to go bobsledding (yes in the summer, and yes I was like THE ONLY person interested in this). I really wish I had bought the helmet rig for my GoPro because it was an experience that is hard to describe!
Thanks to Taylor for taking some pictures!
Basically, we got to the Olympic Park, I sat in a room that looped a video of some rules that I quickly forgot (all I could remember was, if it flips duck down.) Then the three of us were driven up to the top of the course. I was fitted for a helmet, met the driver and the other person who I was going to ride with and got to choose what seat to sit in. The 4th position was the “most aggressive” the second position was the least. I wimped out and went for number 2. Suddenly I was in the sled grabbing onto the straps inside, being told to keep my back straight the entire time or else my body would get sucked into the sled by the force. (Basically it pushes you down so your head ends up by your knees if you don’t keep your back straight). I was also told to push on the pads with outside of my forearm to stay steady. Then with a big push, I was on my way down an Olympic Bobsled course.
We ended up hitting 66mph and they said it was a G-force of about 3 or 4, the winter sleds get up to 5 (um I don’t even really know what that means, but cool!). I can say with confidence that it was worth it and one of the coolest things I’ve done. I LOVE rollercoasters, so this was right up my alley.
Afterwards we got a quick tour and a great view from the top of the ski jumps in the park:
The weather looked like it was holding out so we decided to head over to the Red Butte Garden. Taylor was on a mission to make sure I explored more of the area, and so we ended up finding all these great trails around the garden. It was awesome!
Taylor and Meg at the start of our mini hike.
It was great to spend the day with these ladies. We found a vegetarian place to eat after leaving the Garden, and that was another favorite meal of the trip.
Peanut Pad Thai!
I said goodbye to the girls after they dropped me off at my car and I headed back to Park City to stay another night there. That was the official end of my Blend Retreat. I’ll write a (much shorter!) post about my drop in at Park City CrossFit (spoiler: It was a great experience!) tomorrow.
A huge thank you to Blend Organizers Lindsay, Janetha and Katie, and to sponsors Chobani, Silk, GPP Fitness, Green Mountain Coffee, BluePrint Cleanse ( I won a 3 day cleanse from them at the raffle! I’m excited and scared to try this out. I won’t do it until after training for my half!) amoung many more (go to Blendretreat.com to see the others).